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Pine Nut Cookies

These Italian cookies are rolled in pine nuts.The delicate flavor of the pignoli deepens as the cookies bake.

  • Yield: Makes about 3 dozen
Pine Nut Cookies

Source: Martha Stewart Living, Holiday

Ingredients

  • 2 cups pine nuts
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1/4 cup almond paste
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Process 3/4 cup pine nuts, the sugar, almond paste, and vanilla in a food processor until fine crumbs form. Add egg; pulse to combine. Add flour, baking powder, and salt; process just until dough comes together.

  2. Roll dough into 3/4-inch balls. Roll balls in remaining 1 1/4 cups pine nuts, gently pressing to coat. Space 2 inches apart on parchment-lined baking sheets.

  3. Bake until cookies begin to turn golden brown, about 20 minutes. Let cool completely on sheets on wire racks.

Reviews (26)

  • galquist 8 Oct, 2014

    This isn't a review, but a question about these Pine Nut Cookies... Do these cookies freeze well?

  • ojolie 29 Dec, 2011

    @gypsy 1118 - I originally tried Costco and some others and they just aren't enough less than what I can afford. The health food stores in my area are over-the-top pricey. It's just my personal challenge I guess. The recipe is so inviting that I'll save my pennies from now on and make it maybe next year! Thanks so much.

  • gypsy1118 1 Dec, 2011

    Buy your pine nuts at Costco, BJ's or Sam's much cheaper.. these cookies are expense to buy in the Italian market

  • ojolie 29 Nov, 2011

    As much as I LOVE pine nuts, I would have to consider the expense as those nuts are $22.99 a pound in my area right now. Any other nutmeat would just not be the same though. Maybe a once a year treat.

  • ojolie 29 Nov, 2011

    As much as I LOVE pine nuts, I would have to consider the expense as those nuts are $22.99 a pound in my area right now. Any other nutmeat would just not be the same though. Maybe a once a year treat.

  • ceescape 13 Jan, 2010

    Store in the freezer. To work with sticky dough easier wet your hands.

  • hailinguk 29 May, 2009

    How long do these cookies last and what is the best way to store them? Thanks

  • peggyelliott 31 Mar, 2009

    It's not a Christmas cookie. Add pink,green,yellow coloring to dough and you have Easter cookies! An Italian church has been selling them at the Easter bake sale for 30 plus years.Do not use too much color...want it to be light.

  • freidab 24 Feb, 2009

    These cookies are favorites of my family and friends. When the kids were young, we gathered our own pine nuts and made a family outing of it (nuts are ready around September/October) and the kids loved it. I found the dough easy to make; rolling and coating them are time-consuming but well worth the effort. I cut down on the baking time (10-12 min.) and found that watching and smelling them is the best way to know when they are ready. So far, I found Costco has the best price for pine nuts.

  • josephinebat10 21 Jan, 2009

    CARLAIRD or ANYONE you mentioned that you can make your own almond paste. I would like to know how it's done please.

  • carlaird 21 Jan, 2009

    SORRY CLARALOUIS NOT EXPENSIVE AT ALL!!! The nuts are $10 for a LARGE bag at BJ's and the paste can also be bought in bulk at any farmers market or made on your own!
    I do think its a CHristmas cookie however

  • freidab 20 Jan, 2009

    This recipe produces cookies with a hint of sweetness, allowing the pine nut flavor to be the star. I made one batch, and they were gone in 30 minutes. Made another batch and again, gone in less than 30 minutes. I stashed the last batch where no one would look...in the cookie jar! These are perfect with coffee. Costco has the best price I've seen for pine nuts.

  • asailorswife 15 Jan, 2009

    BJ's has very reasonably priced pine nuts. I believe they come from China, but they taste good and work well for pignoli cookies. I keep extra nuts (of all types) in the freezer to keep them fresh. Pignoli, like macadamia nuts, get rancid faster then most other nuts.

  • Hoyamom 14 Jan, 2009

    Thank you for this recipe. We found some Italian Pignoli Cookies at a bakery in Troy New York while there at a reunion. We brought some home to Texas and have been wanting to find that recipe. Can't wait to try them. What is BJ's as a source of reasonablly priced pine nuts? hoyamomdad

  • ClaraLouis 14 Jan, 2009

    Too expensive to make and very messy. 20 minutes is way to much.
    They came out hard and the pine nuts were burned. I have made much better cookies with cookie of the day.

  • JavaJunkie715 14 Jan, 2009

    either way these are YUMMY...happy baking!!!

  • JavaJunkie715 14 Jan, 2009

    if you look above the MS people put pignoli...

  • marielasauvagesse 14 Jan, 2009

    Either spelling/pronunciation is acceptable--pignoli v. pinoli.

  • susannatre 14 Jan, 2009

    Sorry for correcting but we say pinoli.

  • carlaird 22 Dec, 2008

    THESE ARE THE BEST PIGNOLI COOKIES More of a Philadelphia style than Bsoton or New York! I got 15 out of this recipe using a table spoon measure for a scoop! This is in the Cookie Book and is a Much better recipe than the one in the Baking handbook!!!!!

  • mrboyton 15 Dec, 2008

    I made these for a cookie exchange at work and I have a few bits of advice: First, I think this recipe makes more like 2 dozen than 3. I struggled to squeeze out 3 dozen and I think the ratio of pine nuts to cookie was off- they turned out way too crunchy (They did say- ABOUT 3 dozen). Second, a 10 minute baking time is the max- it might be more like 8 minutes! Even with these caveats though, I think this is a good recipe.

  • AugustChild 9 Sep, 2008

    After following the directions to the letter, I noticed my dough was extremely thin. Do you recommend chilling it? If so do you refrigerate it or freeze it ? How long ? Thanks

  • CrazyObsessed 31 Aug, 2008

    These cookies were delicious!! Super easy to make and a huge hit. These taste just like the ones that I used to get at an Italian bakery when I lived in Boston. I only baked them for about 15 minutes and they came out nice and chewy.

  • Editor_Deb 20 May, 2008

    These cookies are a big hit among my partner's Italian American family! The dough is very sticky--I put it in the fridge for at least a half hour before rolling out the cookies. Also, the 20-minute baking time is too long for my oven. Mine are done in 10-15 minutes. It's best to keep an eye on them the first time around. If you find the pine nuts too expensive, try Costco or BJ's--you can find a large bag for much less than in the grocery store.

  • Editor_Deb 20 May, 2008

    These cookies are a big hit among my partner's Italian American family! The dough is very sticky--I put it in the fridge for at least a half hour before rolling out the cookies. Also, the 20-minute baking time is too long for my oven. Mine are done in 10-15 minutes. It's best to keep an eye on them the first time around. If you find the pine nuts too expensive, try Costco or BJ's--you can find a large bag for much less than in the grocery store.

  • Sweeetgrl1 17 Mar, 2008

    I tried this recipe to see if they were better than the recipe I have used for years. The dough is too sticky to handle and the cookies come out too crispy. Twenty minutes is too long to bake them and I would use less salt or no salt at all.

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